Category Archives: IBM SELECTRIC
OK …better borrow the car and snag this one– ” …A little dirty but works. (Non Crashable word processor, right??) These were the workhorse of every office for sure. $30 OBO. Would just hate to throw this thing away…. “ Contact seller and…..
Well, for WTD, decided to make use of a lovely electrical outlet right along the bike path near my house–loaded up a bike trailer hitched to the trusty Brompton folder bike with an IBM Selectric II, a long cord and a little school desk. Stuck an Olivetti Lettera 32 in the Brompton front bag and rode 7/10 of a mile to the spot, right next to the Schuylkill.
Felt a bit like a snafu at first as runners and cyclists zipped past, not even bothering to look at the printout of the original Sholes, Glidden and Soule patent from June 23, 1868–much less the sheet proclaiming it World Typewriter Day. But soon enough some more curious types gave the Selectric a try.
Sadly, I was unable to follow through on R. Polt’s “alternative materials” suggestion. I had brought along a couple Chemex coffee filters to type on, but never got them out. Also a bit miffed that no one took me up on some suggested letter targets: had brought a sheet with the mailing addresses for President Obama, the Pope and Benedict Cumberbatch, among others. Maybe at the next Type-IN?
But this young man, a recent Upenn grad, did take the time to write a quick letter to a family member–I lent him a fountain pen to sign it with. Both action were firsts for him, I believe, and I suspect, for the letter’s recipient. As the sun dipped low, loaded everything back onto the trailer and was home in time for a little dinner. Bless you, U.S. Patent Office, for making this World Typewriter Day possible.
PS -An hour later, the mailbox had a snack, clunking its satisfaction at the evening treat from our Penn grad, now a consultant for Accenture.
Matriculated! Or curated, at any rate…. The Institute of Contemporary Art ( icaphila.org )at the University of Pennsylvania wanted visitors to their 50th Anniversary Exhibition (now through Aug. 17.) to be able to type their thoughts. Left an Olympia SM-9, a massive Olympia SG-1, and an IBM Selectric II to choose from… They went with the Selectric–still period correct, certainly a design classic worthy of the ICA and impossible to jam. Will monitor the scene and see what gets typed….
It’s beautiful, it’s blue and it belonged to the legendary musicologist and folklorist Alan Lomax.
On eBay right now, no bids yet, someone please buy it–so I don’t! Here’s the link.
And here’s the machine:
What a nice color… same as the one in the snowy field that Hunter S. Thompson menaced with a shiny pistol. This one probably had a much calmer existence!